WASHINGTON: US President Joe Biden on Tuesday named Lina Khan, a Pakistani-American, to lead the Federal Trade Commission.
Lina Khan is known as one of the most prominent Big Tech critics. Big Tech are the five largest and most dominant companies in the information technology industry of the US namely Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon and Microsoft.
The move to elevate Ms. Khan to one of the most powerful regulatory positions in Washington was announced by Senator Amy Klobuchar, a Democrat, at the start of a hearing on Tuesday.
Democrats will now have a majority in the five-member commission, which Ms. Khan will most likely steer toward more aggressive examination of tech companies’ alleged abuse of monopoly power.
Elizabeth Warren, who belongs to the progressive wing of the Democratic Party, said that Ms Khan leading the FTC is “tremendous news,” saying in a statement that “giant tech companies like Google, Apple, Facebook and Amazon deserve the growing scrutiny they are facing and consolidation is choking off competition across American industries.”
Biden’s decision caps an unusually rapid ascent for Ms. Khan, the New York Times pointed out.
She was born in London to Pakistani parents who emigrated to the United States when she was 11. She first rose to prominence while a law student at Yale, where she wrote a paper laying out how modern antitrust laws had failed to check the power of Amazon. The paper attracted notice from policymakers, other lawyers and the press.
Ms. Khan, 32, was sworn in on Tuesday, making her the youngest chairperson in the F.T.C.’s history.
“I look forward to working with my colleagues to protect the public from corporate abuse,” she said in a statement.